Lawmakers drop plan requiring women to register for draft

U.S. Capitol dome restoration formally finished November 15, 2016. (Photo: Alex Schuman)

WASHINGTON (AP) – House and Senate negotiators have reached agreement on a sweeping defense policy bill that rejects a plan to force women to register for a military draft.

Removing the provision is a victory for social conservatives who decried it as another step toward the blurring of gender lines.

The bill, which authorizes spending for military programs, also hands Democrats a win: Lawmakers also struck a measure that they said would undercut protections against workplace discrimination based on sexual or gender orientation.

Congressional staff briefed reporters on Tuesday’s agreement. The legislation has not been released. The staffers are not authorized to speak publicly and spoke on the condition of anonymity.

A vote in the House on the defense bill is expected by Friday, followed by action in the Senate next week.

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